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15 SUSPENSEFUL Books Like One Of Us Is Lying

Last Updated on November 26, 2023 by Louisa

One Of Us Is Lying is the debut suspenseful mystery novel by Karen McManus. It was released in early 2017 and has firmly put McManus on the list of the best American writers of this age.

This novel spent 166 weeks on top of the New York Times Bestseller list – how many novels do you know that are THAT good?

Well, since you’re looking for books like One Of Us Is Lying, you are probably already familiar with the novel and already know that its gripping, multi-perspective storyline has you hooked from start to finish.

If you’re looking for another suspenseful mystery or young adult book to fill the void after finishing this book, then you’ll love these books similar to One Of Us Is Lying.

So, when you’re ready, let’s take a look…

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Quick Answer: Top 3 Picks!

Need a new book but don’t have much time? No worries! Here are my top three recommendations.

Our Favourites!

One of Us Is Next: The Sequel to One of Us Is Lying

#1 Best Highly Acclaimed Novel

One Of Us Is Next by Karen McManus

  • The sequel to One Of Us Is Lying, set one year later
  • A plot line that’s just as sinister as the first novel…
  • New York Times bestselling author

The Girl Who Came Out of The Woods

#2 Best in Thriller

The Girl Who Came Out Of The Woods by Emily Barr

  • A YA Thriller about a 16 year old girl who leaves a commune after a terrible accident
  • A suspense story with coming-of-age elements
  • Told in two perspectives…

A Good Girl's Guide to Murder

#3 Best in Young Adult

A Good Girls Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson

  • About a girl who investigates a murder case as her senior project
  • A mystery/thriller novel with crime drama
  • Highly acclaimed novel with international recognition

Summary of One Of Us Is Lying

Before I look at the top books like One Of Us Is Lying, let’s have a quick recap of the storyline. If you haven’t read this book yet, don’t worry, we won’t include any spoilers.

Four students, Bronwyn, Addy, Nate, Cooper, and Simon walk into detention, but only one of them comes out dead.

Each of them is suspected of murdering Simon Kelleher, and the whole school suspects one of them is lying.

Simon started a blog that revealed dark secrets about students at Bayview High. As the investigation continues, the suspected liars become a group of four friends leading their own investigation about who killed Simon.

But as secrets are revealed, even after Simon’s death, of the liars whose friendship turns destructive?

Each of the students has something personal about their lives that they’re not willing to share.

But when they’re faced with a murder trial, how much are they willing to share and how far will they go to protect their secrets?

Related post: Books with a number in the title!

Best Acclaimed Books Like One Of Us Is Lying

Let’s begin this list with the most acclaimed books like One of Us Is Lying. These are award-winning, highly rated, and the most talked-about novels.

1. One Of Us Is Next – Karen McManus

One Of Us Is Next is the sequel to One Of Us Is Lying and is set a year later.

After a series of gossip apps pop up after Simon’s death, the entire school of Bayview High is invited to play a game of Truth or Dare.

It has everyone on tenterhooks. The truths are hard-hitting, and the dares have deadly consequences.

But who is behind the app? And why are they choosing Bayview to be their puppets?

And the four friends, the liars from One of Us Is Lying, make an appearance.

Related Reading: The Best One Of Us Is Lying Quotes

2. We Were Liars – E Lockhart

We Were Liars is another book about secrets. It follows the Sinclair family, a wealthy family who spend their summers on a private island off the coast of Massachusetts.

Narrated by 17-year-old Cadence Sinclair. Two years prior, at the end of a family trip to the island, Cadence suffers a traumatic event that leaves her with migraines and a strange case of amnesia.

Now dosed up on meds that cloud her judgment, she returns to the island to find out exactly what happened two years ago.

As it happens, it transpires the family each has its own secrets, lies, and flaws behind the glossy veneer.

In a nutshell, it’s about “A brilliant damaged girl a passionate political boy, and a beautiful and distinguished family.”

Related Reading: Books Like We Were Liars

3. They Both Die At The End – Adam Silvera

If you enjoy the young adult elements of One Of Us Is Lying, then you’ll enjoy They Both Die At The End.

On September 5th, Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio receive the news that they are going to die today.

With only one day left to live, two total strangers are both on the search the make new friends while they still can.

Fortunately, there’s an app called ‘Last Friend’, designed to acquaint people with other ‘last day on Earthers’.

This is the story of Mateo and Rufus as they explore one last adventure together and become best friends.

If you think this sounds interesting, then you might like these similar books.

4. I Am Not A Number – Lisa Heathfield

Set in a dystopian future, Ruby is swept up by protesters which caused her to be locked in a prison camp. She is assigned the number, 276, and forced to undergo horrors within the camp.

Desperate to tell the world the truth about what goes on here, she knows that she needs to get out.

This is a suspenseful novel with themes of coming of age, conformity, dictatorship, and control.

Written by the award-winning author, Lisa Heathfield, who is best known for her novels Seed and Paper Butterflies.

5. Three Hours – Rosamund Lupton

Three Hours is a thriller story of a school siege that’s taking place in a school in rural Somerset, UK.

From the wounded headmaster in the library to the Syrian refugee who cares only about keeping her brother safe to the love-blind teenager Hannah and the parents outside.

This multi-perspective story tells of anguish, fear, and courage during a three-hour event.

As the students take refuge inside the school, each must undergo the most terrifying 180 minutes of their life.

With themes of radicalization, extremism, and hate, this novel like One Of Us Is Lying is not for the faint-hearted. It was nominated for Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year in 2021.

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Best Mystery Books Like One Of Us Is Lying

One of the best aspects of One Of Us Is Lying is the sense of mystery. If you like One Of Us Is Lying for its mysterious plot line, then you’ll enjoy these books…

6. The Girl Who Came Out of the Woods – Emily Barr

Arty grew up in a commune called ‘The Clearing’. Cut off from the rest of the world, the teenager knew only of the community in the forest in which she grew up.

When a terrible accident forces Arty to leave, she must seek refuge in the world outside.

As she wanders the streets of India, she meets someone who turns her into an overnight celebrity. Soon, she is followed by thousands of strangers and is forced to battle against a world of hashtags and photographs.

As she learns to adapt to this strange new world and escape her followers, she realises that her old life in the commune may be catching up with her…

View it on:

7. The Wife and the Widow – Christian White

The Wife and the Widow is a suspense thriller set in a rural island town, where after a body is washed up, two women are forced to confront that the man they called their husband, has been living a double life.

Kate lives in Melbourne with her husband John and daughter. Each summer, they would visit this sleepy island where they have their holiday home.

When they visit their holiday home but realize that John did not return from the business trip, they realize something is wrong.

At the same time, Abby has been living on the island all her life with her husband and two kids. When Ray does not come home one day, they are immediately worried.

After the two wives learn of John/Ray’s body washing up, the two conspire to figure out what happened and why he was living a double life.

8. All These Bodies – Kendare Blake

Set in the summer of 1958 in the midwest, All These Bodies is a crime thriller novel told from two perspectives of a string of horrific murders.

The victims are found in ordinary environments, their homes, their cars, but each of them has had their bodies drained of blood.

After The Carlson family is slaughtered, the case finally has a lead. 15-year-old Marie Catherine Hale was found at the scene, she is believed to have survived the attack, only upon investigation, it appears that Marie has not been completely honest.

Michael Jensen is the son of the local sheriff with a dream of becoming a journalist. He takes an interest in the case and builds a relationship with Marie.

Marie trusts Michael, and as she recounts the events of that night, Michael learns the truth about what happened to the Carlsons…

If this book sounds exciting to you, then you might also like these books like The Silent Patient.

9. All Your Twisted Secrets – Diana Urban

Diana Urban‘s All Your Twisted Secrets is a dark thriller novel like One Of Us Is Lying. It tells of six angsty high school seniors who each have their secrets and lies.

While trapped in an “escape-the-room” like scenario, they each have one hour to choose which of them has to be killed and who should do the deed.

Escaping isn’t an option. As each character is filled with fear, and the recounts of their year start to unfold, they realize that their past deeds have each landed them in this exact moment.

How will these teenagers reach their ultimate conclusion?

Trigger warning: This novel contains strong language and scenes of violence.

Best Young Adult Books Like One Of Us Is Lying

For YA fans, I couldn’t make this list without giving you some top young adult novels like One Of Us Is Lying.

10. A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder – Holly Jackson

Five years ago, a popular high school student called Andie Bell was murdered. The suspect was her boyfriend, Sal Singh, but he killed himself shortly after. The case was deemed solved.

But for Pip, the case still haunts her. Something doesn’t add up, and she decides to reopen the investigation herself.

Only Pip is a senior in high school and is investigating the case as part of her final project.

As the case unfolds, more secrets spill out and there are twists and turns at every corner.

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder is a suspenseful crime thriller with tons of mystery, perfect for fans of One of Us Is Lying.

Related Reading: Books Like A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

11. Frostheart – Jamie Littler

Ash has a gift. The gift of ‘song-weaving’. It allows him to connect to creatures that live beneath the snow sea. The people who live in Fira hate and fear song-weavers, and so Ash is alone.

He has no family, they disappeared when he was small.

When one day a ship sails into Fira and a brave attempt to save, ultimately leads to Ash being banished, he is whisked away by the ship Frostheart and his crew.

As he journeys beyond his safe fortress, away from the sea monsters, he learns more about the world and possibly, even what happened to his parents.

Like One Of Us Is Lying, this novel has themes of isolation, of growing conflict, and resolution.

12. All Of This Is True – Lygia Day Penaflor

All Of This Is True is the suspenseful novel by New York Times bestselling author, Lygia Day Penaflor, who is best known for her novel Girl in Pieces.

It follows four teens who befriend their favorite novelist, except that when her new book comes out, their deepest and darkest secrets are revealed. And the consequences are devastating.

Told through a series of interviews, journal entries, and even passages from the book within the book, you’ll be taken on a gripping journey through a scandal that have you hooked from start to finish.

13. Thirteen Reasons Why – Jay Asher

Poignantly placed at number 13, are Thirteen Reasons Why, the YA novel by Jay Asher that rose to fame after the Netflix series bought it to light.

After Hannah Baker takes her own life, she leaves behind a collection of thirteen tapes. Each stated a reason why she took her life.

Clay Jenson is one of the few students and friends of Hannah to receive the tapes. As he listens, he uncovers the story that lead to his friend’s end and uncovers a series of secrets that should be bought to light.

Trigger warning: This book contains scenes of suicide and some scenes that readers will find distressing.

14. Clique Bait – Ann Valett

Chloe Whittaker is hellbent on revenge after her best friend, Monica, was humiliated by the “popular” kids in their high school.

Chloe plans to take each one of these bullies down and teach them a lesson.

Going undercover, she is carefully devising a plan to uncover their deepest and darkest secrets and reveal them to the world.

The only problem is, that she starts to develop feelings for one of them… which complicates things a bit.

15. Sadie – Courtney Summers

Sadie hasn’t had it easy. She grew up in an isolated town without parents, and struggled to raise her sister Mattie. She just wants a normal life and to keep their heads above water.

When her sister is found dead, her world crumbles. The police investigation leads to nowhere, and Sadie is determined to find out what happened to her sister and bring justice to who is responsible.

West McCray is a radio show host doing a segment about small towns in America, and after hearing Sadie’s story, he becomes obsessed with finding her and the missing girl.

He starts his own podcast as he follows Sadie on her journey for answers, hoping to find out what happened before it’s too late.

Sadie is a suspenseful novel told from two perspectives that will have you hooked until the very last word.

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Final Word on Best Books Like One Of Us Is Lying

So there you have it, my top 15 books like One Of Us Is Lying.

Whether you’re after something with a gripping plot twist or an action-packed drama, no doubt the suspense in these novels like One Of Us Is Lying will have you hooked.

Of course, there are other books that we could have featured on this list. Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments and help grow this epic book society!

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About Louisa Smith

Editor/Founder - Epic Book Society

Louisa is the Founder, Editor, and Head Honcho of Epic Book Society. She was born and raised in the United Kingdom and graduated from the University for the Creative Arts with a degree in Journalism. Louisa began her writing career at the age of 7 when her poetry was published in an anthology of poems to celebrate the Queen's Jubilee. Upon graduating university, she spent several years working as a journalist writing about books before transitioning to become a Primary School Teacher. Louisa loves all genres of books, but her favorites are Sci-Fi, Romance, Fantasy, and Young Adult Fiction. Read more Louisa's story here.

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